The Minister who was speaking at the KPMG post-budget forum in Accra said, “Maybe part of the Achilles heel is also the issue of prosecution if you do something wrong and how quickly we as a society are ready to move on that tangent; but for GRA, we are moving towards whether we can get special courts to facilitate some of the things.”
Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta hints of a special court to deal with challenges with tax collections
Ghana’s Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta says the government is putting measures in place to set up special courts to handle the legal challenges encountered in revenue mobilization in the country.
The Ghanaian government is expecting to raise about GHC67.1 billion in revenue and grants for 2020.
Mr Ofori-Atta made this known when he presented the 2020 budget in Parliament. He said that a chunk of the revenue target, some GHC65.8 billion, will be from domestic revenue.
The Minister also announced that the government will not introduce new taxes but rather a complete review of Ghana’s structure will ensure that the government meets its 2020 revenue targets.
Meanwhile, the government hopes to spend GHC85.9 billion in 2020. This means the government will spend GHC18.8 billion more than the revenue it will generate next year.
Mr Ofori-Atta explained that to raise the said amount the government is ready to support the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) in its ongoing reforms for 2020 and the medium term to “optimise revenue collection.”
He added that the government shall pursue the following revenue measures, to boost domestic revenue:
- Government shall renew and extend the National Fiscal Stabilisation Levy and Special Import Levies (SIL) for five years to support the Budget
- In line with Government policy, the personal income tax band will be adjusted and the necessary parliamentary approval sought to ensure that the 12% minimum wage increase for 2020 is tax-exempt.
- Personal Reliefs such as marriage relief, child education relief, and old age relief, which were last adjusted in 2015, will also be reviewed upwards, consistent with the government's commitment to supporting families.
He further said the government would restructure the tax system and develop a comprehensive revenue policy and strategy to address the challenges of revenue mobilization.
“The Ghana Revenue Authority occupies a critical position in the economy and is responsible for approximately 70% of domestic revenues. After 10 years of integration, the government is ready to carry out the next generation of reforms in revenue administration.”
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